Spawning two top 10 singles in the UK ("Acceptable in the 80s" and "The Girls"), "I Created Disco" by Calvin Harris is probably my favorite party album of 2007. Put the CD into your player and every song will lift the vibe of any event. The title of the CD has little to do with its contents (a fusion of electro, 80s new wave and power pop) nor the ego of the artist (probably one of the nicest, most down to earth musicians out there). Quietly released in US late in the year, "I Created Disco" is definitely a great purchase idea with those holiday gift cards you received.
DJ Ron Slomowicz: 2007 was a big year for you. What's been your highlight of the year?
Calvin Harris: I don't know, the year's progressed with many different highlights. Having a record out was pretty special because I'd never had a record out on CD before, so that was a nice moment. We did a lot of really good gigs this year, and I wasn't expecting any of the gigs to be good, but the majority of them were. I've met some quite interesting people which was fun. I couldn't narrow it down to one.
RS: In your gigs, you perform live with a full band. That's
certainly new to the dance music world. How do the fans respond to you
in your live setups?
Calvin Harris: Most of the people said they didn't know what to expect. There's a mild air of shock and surprise, and then once it kicks in they're like, 'Oh actually, it sounds really good.' People have been saying that for about a year now, so we're getting good at it and it does sound good. Compared to going to go on as a DJ, I think we're a lot louder and a lot more danceable than it would be if it was me in front of the machinery, and obviously it's a more interesting spectacle for the people watching rather than just me behind some decks, because everyone's seen that a million times before. It's nice to do something a bit different.
RS: Exactly. The title "I Created Disco," where did that come from?
Calvin Harris: Oh well, I wrote a song called "I Created Disco," and it was a monologue of a fictional character who was around in the 40s, just after the war – he created disco and that was that. But then I was being hassled for an album title from my record label and I said, 'Well, how about that," and then I wasn't sure and then I couldn't think of anything better. Tthey really liked it and said it would look good for the posters. It was a good slogan and then that was that. I couldn't think of anything better, so we just used that, and now everyone thinks I'm some terrible big-headed guy who actually thinks he created disco, when of course it is a lighthearted thing.
RS: Because of course you didn't created disco, you created electro.
Calvin Harris: I didn't even create that. I don't know what I created.
RS: How about you created a really great album, does that work?
Calvin Harris: I don't know. Not yet, maybe one day.
RS: In your album there's a real 80s vibe. What was it about the
80s that inspired the album?
Calvin Harris: I guess it's a mixture between the fact that I was listening to a lot of Prince and David Bowie albums at the time, and a lot of the equipment that I use is very old. A lot of the synthesizers sound like they're from the 80s, so I guess it was just using old equipment and trying to put it in a modern context. I don't think it actually sounds 80s, it's just the sounds within themselves that I use from the 80s. But production value-wise, I wouldn't say that it sounds like a Phil Collins record, you know.